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Wordsworth’s Lost Satire

Nicholas Roe, 6 July 1995

... Everyone knows that as a young English Jacobin Wordsworth visited France, becoming so intimately entangled in Revolutionary affairs that he might have remained there, eventually to be destroyed in the Terror. Later in life, though, he deliberately suppressed many aspects of his earlier career, in order to represent himself as an elect spirit – the prophet of nature, who had survived triumphantly undisfigured by the turmoil of contemporary history ...

Wordsworth’s Crisis

E.P. Thompson, 8 December 1988

Wordsworth and Coleridge: The Radical Years 
by Nicholas Roe.
Oxford, 306 pp., £27.50, March 1988, 0 19 812868 1
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... marginalised. A new study was needed, consolidating and reviewing the evidence, and this is what Nicholas Roe offers. He claims no startling discoveries, but he brings together in one place much scattered information and a few new details from Godwin’s papers. His treatment of the tradition of Dissent in Cambridge fills out what Schneider, Chard and ...

Wordsworth and the Well-Hidden Corpse

Marilyn Butler, 6 August 1992

The Lyrical Ballads: Longman Annotated Texts 
edited by Michael Mason.
Longman, 419 pp., £29.99, April 1992, 0 582 03302 0
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Strange Power of Speech: Wordsworth, Coleridge and Literary Possession 
by Susan Eilenberg.
Oxford, 278 pp., £30, May 1992, 0 19 506856 4
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The Politics of Nature: Wordsworth and Some Contemporaries 
by Nicholas Roe.
Macmillan, 186 pp., £35, April 1992, 0 333 52314 8
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... Eilenberg goes into the deep relationship between the collaborating authors that Mason puts aside, Nicholas Roe the historical circumstances out of which the Ballads arose. Eilenberg’s well-written, clever book shares the recent fashionable interest in poetry’s social dimension. Though she uncovers the pains of joint authorship as Wordsworth and ...

How did he get it done?

John Jones: Leigh Hunt’s sense of woe, 22 September 2005

Fiery Heart: The First Life of Leigh Hunt 
by Nicholas Roe.
Pimlico, 428 pp., £14.99, January 2005, 0 7126 0224 0
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The Wit in the Dungeon: A Life of Leigh Hunt 
by Anthony Holden.
Little, Brown, 448 pp., £20, January 2005, 0 316 85927 3
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... mark is deemed to come with Shelley’s drowning and beach cremation in 1822. Hunt died in 1859. Nicholas Roe’s book is not the place to go for news of the Victorian Leigh Hunt and his relations with the young Tennyson, the Brownings, Dickens, Macaulay, Carlyle; but it welcomes inquiries after the friend of Byron and Shelley and Keats, and the ...

Inspiration, Accident, Genius

Helen Vendler, 16 October 1997

by Andrew Motion.
Faber, 612 pp., £25, October 1997, 9780571172276
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... to Imperial practice.) Back to Endymion. Motion – though drawing on Vincent Newey’s essay in Nicholas Roe’s 1995 collection Keats and History for his quotations about Keats’s ‘unwitting but definite imaginative consumption, and entrepreneurial representation, of the Orient’ – ratifies these absurd remarks (made offensive by the critic’s ...

A Solemn and Unsexual Man

Colin Burrow: Parson Wordsworth, 4 July 2019

Wordsworth and Coleridge: The Radical Years 
by Nicholas Roe.
Oxford, 352 pp., £25, November 2018, 978 0 19 881811 3
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Wordsworth’s Fun 
by Matthew Bevis.
Chicago, 264 pp., £22, September 2019, 978 0 226 65219 1
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... Wordsworth come from? Where did he get that sublime sense of something indescribable but urgent? Nicholas Roe’s Wordsworth and Coleridge: The Radical Years first appeared thirty years ago – too late to help me with my A-Level essay. The new introduction to the second edition contains a persuasive reading of ‘Tintern Abbey’ as a ...

Hooted from the Stage

Susan Eilenberg: Living with Keats, 25 January 2024

Keats: A Brief Life in Nine Poems and One Epitaph 
by Lucasta Miller.
Vintage, 357 pp., £12.99, April 2023, 978 1 5291 1090 6
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Keats’s Odes: A Lover’s Discourse 
by Anahid Nersessian.
Verso, 136 pp., £12.99, November 2022, 978 1 80429 034 7
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... household as affectionate, and Keats in particular as brave, just and kind. In his 2012 biography, Nicholas Roe represents the young Keats as emotionally disturbed, prone to frighteningly violent outbursts (as when, at five years of age, he stood outside his mother’s bedroom with a toy sword, whether to prevent her from leaving or to prevent anyone from ...

Blackberry Apocalypse

Nicholas Guyatt: Evangelical Disarray, 15 November 2007

American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America 
by Chris Hedges.
Cape, 254 pp., £12.99, February 2007, 978 0 224 07820 7
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... taking office in 1977. He didn’t seem exercised by the Supreme Court’s pro-choice decision in Roe v. Wade, he put pressure on Israel to return land to Egypt and he was insufficiently bullish towards America’s godless Communist enemies. He even chose a humanist, Walter Mondale, as his vice-president. In the early 1970s, Christian leaders had started ...

Guilty Men

Michael Neve, 5 March 1981

The Fate of Mary Rose 
by Caroline Blackwood.
Cape, 208 pp., £5.95, February 1981, 0 224 01791 8
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Darling, you shouldn’t have gone to so much trouble 
by Caroline Blackwood and Anna Haycraft.
Cape, 224 pp., £6.50, November 1980, 0 224 01834 5
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... be altogether fated if the novel is altogether to succeed. The determinism is not unlike that in Nicholas Roeg’s film, Don’t look now, and equally to be resisted. The classical finality needs to be fought against: even Scylla and Charybdis can be negotiated. Caroline Blackwood has joined hands with Anna Haycraft to keep herself, and us, going in another ...

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